Saturday, January 26, 2008

A Day in the Life of a DI Fellow: Part III

What did you all do yesterday?

If you are like most people, you work and/or go to school during the week. Maybe you are studying for your CDL test, maybe you are teaching some fourth graders fractions, maybe you helped deliver a baby after you had been on shift for 18 hours, maybe you folded 928,656 sweaters at Old Navy and youre going to fold
928,656 again tomorrow, maybe you retired a few years ago but you still had shit to do around the house. You worked. You did things.

Normal people like you and me work.

But what does a DI Fellow do every day?


I dont know about you all, but Ive always really wondered what Casey Luskin does all day. I mean, Dembski and Behe are employed by outside organizations, but Luskin works for the Discovery Institute.

Hes a lawyer, but he doesnt stop DI fellows from stepping in legal shit.

Hes got degrees in geology, but he doesnt do any science.

So what does he do all day?

Well, like Dembski, evidently he just plays on the internet. Except instead of cruising for... ummm... Luskin is trolling for anyone talking about intelligent design in a negative way so he can spring into action as DIs attack dog.

Sometimes its just irritating, like a toy poodle attacking a pit bull, like when he went after Carl Zimmer or Chris Mooney.

I also wasnt particularly amused at his 'defense' of Behe.

But then sometimes Caseys internet hit jobs are not funny at all. Normal people, minding their own business, wake up to find out they are the current DI target.

His attack on KU astronomy student 'Angry Astronomer' was completely out of the blue-- Jon only knew about it because of Technorati.

And now Casey is attacking retired professors.

Les Lane is a retired virology professor at the University of Nebraska. He also just so happens to be one of the gentlemen in Nebraska Citizens for Science who mentored me into the pro-science-chick I am today. Les maintains a Geocities webpage-- its nothing exotic, but its a great collection of links and information for pro-science people. Heres what he found in his inbox yesterday:

Dear Mr. Lane,

Greetings. At you have a copyrighted photo of me to which I own the copyright. I do not give you permission to post it on your website. Please remove the picture from your website.

Also, you write that I have “dubious credentials.” At present, I leave it up to your conscience to decide whether the sources you cite on your website are informed or accurate, or whether the claims you make are accurate, but for your information, I am an attorney in good standing in the State of California (see ) and I hold a B.S. and M.S. in earth sciences from UC San Diego, having done about 4 year’s worth of scientific research at Scripps Institution for Oceanography and published a scientific paper out of some of that research. (You seem aware of that paper because you seem to cite it elsewhere on your site.) I continue to do scientific research and am currently preparing some research I have recently done for submission for publication. In any case, at present, I’ll let your conscience dictate how you proceed from here regarding whether you now continue to retain on your website the false claim that I have “dubious credentials.”



Casey Luskin

Yes, you read that right. After the DI wailed about Dembskis theft being a 'witch hunt' and 'petty', Casey Luskin is demanding photos of himself are taken down from random websites because 'he owns the copyright'. I mean there is nothing 'offensive' on Less page. He even links to Caseys webpage!!!

Im really, really getting sick of this joke, but:
I dont even know how he found Les's page, unless Casey just sits around Googling himself all day... Anyway, Les is nice, and he took the pic down. However, remember he is one of the reasons 'I am the way I am'-- he had to sass back**:

I have removed the picture. I consider scientists' attitude toward science an important aspect of their credentials.


Casey used that as an opportunity to talk about himself-- Note the lack of question marks in Les's reply above:
Thanks for that reply. Since you inquired about my attitudes towards science, I suppose it might be helpful for you to know that I believe that all science should be based upon the scientific method, that evolution is science, that evolution should be taught in schools, and that evolution should be taught as a science that is open to critical scrutiny and not as a dogma that cannot be questioned.



End of story:
I likewise believe that evolution shouldn't be taught dogmatically. However I also believe that to promote to science students what hasn't survived scientific peer review, to suggest to them that "incompleteness" discredits science, or to encourage them to substitute rationalizing for science, risks intellectual dishonesty.


LOL!! SLAM! LOL!! Poor DI attack dog, cant win against puppies, cant win against the retired pit dogs, sure as hell cant win against the dogs in their prime. Poor poor Casey!

**Please note, Les uses apostrophes appropriately. That did not rub off on me. :P


John Pieret said...

There is no getting around the fact that the term "dork" was invented with someone very much like Casey in mind.

Chris Noble said...

I thought he sat around all day practising the ID mantra.

"ID has nothing to do with religion"
"ID has nothing to do with religion"
"ID has nothing to do with religion"
"ID has nothing to do with religion"
"ID has nothing to do with religion"
"ID has nothing to do with religion"

It would be interesting to do an fMRI study to see what part of the brain lights up in IDers when they repat this mantra.

Is it the same part that lights up when Clinton says "I did not have sex with that woman"?

Bill said...

More like an attack bichon frise.

Anonymous said...

Is he a YEC or an OEC. There would be a lot of denial if he was a YEC.

I like how he is all pro science in the letter. I wonder what he says to the Christian audience.

Orac said...


I, too, always wondered what Casey actually does all day to earn his salary from the DI...

rsht61 said...

Those last three posts make me want to express my gratitude that you don't limit your activities to just trying to do the science as well as possible. It is so important that those who really know what they're talking about because they're hands-on every day (and that can never be all of us) also have the attitude to ruthlessly smack down the fakers who irresponsibly, recklessly and without putting in any of the work go around publicly denouncing reality. And please don't dare stop being Mean to them when you do it, either; polite disagreement is too easy for them to ignore, but if they have to squeal in response, it just might make one or two more people scrutinize what's being squealed about a little more closely and that ought to mean a leg up for our side.

Anonymous said...

I've always viewed Casey's job as "Canus nipponicus" in the Larson cartoon where future archaeologists discover "Mailman" with Canus Nipponicus attached.

Can be found in this doc file:

Anonymous said...

"Luskin is trolling for anyone talking about intelligent design in a negative way so he can spring into action as DIs attack dog.

I guess that is different position from Salvador "willing to fall on a grenade for Dembski" Cordova's.

Anonymous said...

Lets try this again"


If this fails just google "Canus nipponicus"

Anonymous said...

"I, too, always wondered what Casey actually does all day to earn his salary from the DI..."

I'll add my name to the list. I have never seen Casey Luskin perform any task effectively. He's fish in a barrell, even more so than most IDers. He must have friends/family in good graces with some donors to actually get paid for this crap.

CJSkeptic said...

Yep, at least one of us is studying the CDL. I take my hazmat exam Monday, and then I'll be able to drive and get fully trained. I'll be the skeptical trucker here very soon.

Halliburton is hiring like mad, along with several other drilling firms, so I'll be making all kinds of money. I can't say for sure how I feel about working for big oil, but they're the ones paying the big bucks and providing health insurance.

So it is up before I start my new job, I'm going to be dedicating all of Monday night to getting the audio from the anti-vaccer event ready. Expect it sometime late Tuesday.

Evil Fruit Lord said...

Um, how on earth is a M.S. in Earth Science count as anything but "dubious credentials" when it comes to being an authority on evolution (or lack thereof?)

Even if it was in the right field, second author on one paper four years ago hardly qualifies as impressive.

Jay said...

Man, I wish the Disco Institute would pay me to sit on ass and play on the internet.

Rich Hughes said...

Casey luskin is a shiotehawk.

Will that get me in trouble?

Anonymous said...

But if Luskin was actually good at anything, the DI wouldn't want him -- that certainly seems to be their m.o.

Anonymous said...

This is only idle speculation, but I suspect that Casey did not in fact own the copyright on the picture. I don't know the background on it, it's possible he does.. but I'm guessing it's more likely that he either still does not possess the copyright, or he got whoever took the picture to give him the copyright so he could do this.

In any case, the irony is delicious, although I am kind of envious. I wish I had such a cushy job that I could spend all day googling myself and using weak legal threats to try to get people to take my picture off of a web page AND GET PAID TO DO IT.

Anonymous said...

Nomad beat me to it. I would've challenged Luskin's claim to own the copyright. The photographer owns it unless it was explicitly assigned to Luskin, which is not usual in the portrait shooting world. Of course maybe he took it himself.

Ian Wood said...

Is that his picture? It doesn;t look human does it? it certianyl doesn;t look designed....

MachiavelliDiscourse said...

Very amusing. If you haven't already seen it, I thought you might be interested in this YouTube video (featuring your exposure of Dembski's copyright faux pas):

Rev. BigDumbChimp said...

Ok I know it's childish to make remarks about someone's appearance ..

But what the hell

You'd think Casey would take some of that DI pay and have someone pay attention to those Pyrrharctia isabella he has above his eyes. He's going to have a full fledged, grade A, blue-ribbon Unibrow pretty soon.

Anonymous said...

If you want a few chuckles, go to Google, then click "Images," then insert "Casey Luskin" and hit enter. Enjoy.

(Casey will probably sue Google for defamation of character or something...)

Doppelganger said...

As an aside, I was following some links form various blogs regarding the DI's propaganda minister, and I came across his silly PCID 'article' on human evolution.

Of interest was his acknowledgements section where he writes:

"I would like to thank Ryan Huxley, Dr. David Redelings, and Patrick Redelings for their
help and advice in discussing and editing this paper."

So, I googles "David Redelings", and came up with a couple of possibilities. One guy is in Scotland, so I doubted it was him.

The other?

This guy:

David Redelings, B.S., M.Div., Ph.D.
New Testament
San Diego, CA

Maybe he is a pal of ReMine's?

Patrick Redelings is a youth minister...

Who better to consult re: a paper on human evolution?
But no, ID has nothing to do with religion....

that works at the Bethel Seminary,

Rhoadan said...

You do know that PZ calls Luskin an "attack mouse," right?

Hipple, Rev. Paul T. said...

Frankly, this Article disturbs me. I've always heard that he is an outstanding lawyer, and a strong champion for his clients fiduciary interests.

And as a matter of fact, his 'plea to conscious' is seen increasingly as a creative and novel negotiating tactic, one that is being adopted by his attorney colleagues throughout the country with considerable vigor....and success!!

Though I must add, a look at that picture makes one highly suspicious he is not an authentic True Christian.


Rev. BigDumbChimp said...

I've always heard that he is an outstanding lawyer, and a strong champion for his clients fiduciary interests.

Let me guess at your sources....

Anonymous said...

From Luskin's recent EN&V post, about the "Life: What a Concept" roundtable:

None of the participants are favorable towards intelligent design, but the transcript of their conversations suggested that the ribosome may exhibit "irreducible >>complexity" (their words).

"Their words???"

I looked at that transcript; unless I missed something, every utterance of "irreducible complexity" was an example of something that ID advocates would say exhibited "irreducible complexity."